Greeley, Horace. Letter, circa 1850 | Illinois History and Lincoln Collections
This collection contains a letter from Horace Greeley to William T. Robinson, written on September 4 of an unknown year.
Horace Greeley (1811-1872) founded the Tribune newspaper in New York City in 1841. He was an immensely successful reporter, and the Tribune skyrocketed in popularity. Greeley promoted his political and moral beliefs in the newspaper, including his opposition to slavery. After posting the bail of former Confederate President Jefferson Davis, Greeley became a confusing public figure and lost many of his original supporters. When Ulysses S. Grant ran for a second term as President of the United States, Horace Greeley was appointed against him as a member of the Liberal Republican Party. Greeley passed away before the official electoral votes were cast in 1872 but had already lost the election.
This collection contains a handwritten letter from Horace Greeley to William T. Robinson. Greeley wrote this letter from the Tribune Office on September 4 and did not note the year, but mentioned Henry Jarvis Raymond. Greeley insinuated that Raymond still worked for the Tribune at the time, which suggests the authorship date was circa 1850. In this letter, Greeley responded to a message from Robinson, where Robinson had asked Greeley about what it takes to become a successful reporter. Greeley told Robinson his opinion on the traits that made a reporter excellent. He closed his letter by stating, "There are a great many Reporters, so called, more than can find employment. A first-rate one, however, would, after reporting a while for little or nothing to make himself known, have employment and a good compensation. Yours, hurried, Horace Greeley."
This collection was found in MS 1200 - Horner Papers in October of 2021. The letter was most likely acquired by Harlan Hoyt Horner prior to the creation of the Lincoln Room in 1953 and donated along with Horner's writing on Greeley.